For patients living with heart failure who have been hospitalized, the importance of scheduling that first follow-up appointment after discharge cannot be overemphasized.
Now, a new Heart Failure Outpatient Center offers patients a convenient location and time to schedule that key appointment. A nurse practitioner experienced in the care of heart failure sees patients every Tuesday from 9 a.m.to noon at Wilmington Hospital Health Center.
“Too often, heart failure patients who return home face readmission within 30 days from discharge,” explains Heart Failure Program Clinical Leader Carolyn Moffa, MSN, FNP-C.
“With timely follow up, working closely with their cardiologists and primary care providers, we can ensure that patients get the best care possible to maintain their independence and quality of life and avoid hospital re-admission.”
The nurse practitioner can conduct a physical exam and review of prescribed medications to help ensure patients are getting the maximum benefit and not experiencing any side effects. The clinic can also provide counseling and education about diet, lifestyle and fluid management, as well as advice on how to recognize signs and symptoms of worsening heart failure so patients know how to seek treatment early and as needed.
“We recognize that the ability of patients to obtain follow-up care quickly after a hospital discharge can significantly reduce their chances of being readmitted to the hospital,” adds Heart Failure Program Medical Director Mitchell Saltzberg, M.D., FAHA, FACC. “Our ability to offer outpatient services at both Christiana and Wilmington hospitals underscores the program’s commitment to ensuring that adequate services are available for heart failure patients to have timely follow up in the community.”
To schedule an appointment at the Heart Failure Outpatient Center at Wilmington, call 302-733-1663.